Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in East Providence, Rhode Island.

Meghan & Brian

Wedding days are full of big moments and sometimes as a photographer, it's easy to get so lost in the big moments of the day that you don't see the overall picture you're painting.

I don't think this has ever been clearer for me than working with Meghan and Brian for their September wedding at Immaculate Conception Church and Squantum Association.

Meghan and Brian's wedding day was jam-packed of big, fun moments that it wasn't until I finished editing their photos fully that I saw just how impactful the little moments were as well. 

Whether it was watching Brian break down in tears on the way out of the church, seeing the smile on Meghan's face during their formal portraits or laughing as both the bride and groom rocked out on the dance floor, this was one wedding day were you really need to see ALL of the photos to get an idea of the full story.

And what a story it was.

Brin has his hair cut prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.
A look at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian gets a haircut prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian and his groomsmen get haircuts prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.

Meghan and Brian's wedding coverage began in an unusual way for me as, for the first time ever, I was lucky enough to photograph ACTUAL groom prep. As in, a groom actually getting ready to get married.

Normally, groom prep is little more than the groom and his friends in a crowded hotel room tossing on a shirt and pants but Brian was much different than most.

Instead of going the traditional route, Brian brought his groomsmen with him to Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston for a haircut and a hot shave. I'll be honest, I didn't get why he insisted on having this documented until I got there and saw how awesome this was for myself.

Talk about a great idea! And what a truly unique way to start a wedding day.

Brian fixes his hair prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian adjusts his shirt cuffs prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian has his tie put on prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian puts his jacket on prior to his September 2018 wedding ceremony, at Gents Barbershop and Spa in Cranston, Rhode Island.

After about an hour with Brian and his guys, it was time for me to head to Meghan and her girls and their bridal prep session at the Biltmore. I love the Biltmore. It's one of my favorite marquee spots in Providence and it definitely did not disappoint for Meghan's wedding day. 

Meghan has her hair fixed at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan puts lipstick on at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan looks at herself in the mirror at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.

One of the first things I noticed about this bride on her big day was how calm she really seemed. With her hair and makeup largely on point by the time I arrived, I was able to sit back and focus on being a bit more creative with my shots. That meant taking more time than usual to get dress and detail shots as I waited for Meghan to get ready for her first look with her father. 

A look at Meghan's dress and shoes at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
A look at Meghan's dressat the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan has her dress zipped up at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan puts her earrings on at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan has help putting her shoes on at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan's dad waits for her for a first look prior to Meghan and Brian's September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her dad share a first look at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her dad share a first look at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.

And what a first look it was. I loved how emotional Meghan's dad got when he saw her (he even tried to look up to the sky to avoid crying.) 

With the formalities of the prep period out of the way, Meghan and I headed downstairs into the Biltmore's lobby to take full advantage of that amazing chandelier and glass elevator that just made her bridal portraits pop. And then, if that wasn't enough, we had full access to a beautiful balcony area outside of Meghan's suite that proved the perfect spot for some nice photos with her and her bridesmaids before the ceremony.

Meghan poses for a bridal portrait at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan poses for a bridal portrait at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan poses for a bridal portrait at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan poses for a photo with her bridesmaids at the Biltmore in Providence, Rhode Island prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.

If you're noticing a theme thus far in Meghan and Brian's day, trust me, you're not alone. 
It took me a while to really appreciate it but every place these two chose to play a role in their wedding day was visually stunning. 

Their church was no different. 

Meghan and Brian were married at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston. It took me a few minutes to place how I knew this church when I walked in (I shot a few masses for a local high school there) but it didn't take me long to sit in awe at how cool this place looks and smile as I thought about all the cool angles I've be able to capture of this gigantic life moment for Meghan and Brian.

Meghan sits in the limo prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her father get ready to walk into the church prior to her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian reacts to seeing Meghan during his September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan walks down the aisle during her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian smiles during his September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan and Brian hold hands during their September2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan listens to Brian's vows during her September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Brian says his vows during his September 2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan and Brian hold hands during their September2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.
Meghan and Brian kiss during their September2018 wedding ceremony at Immaculate Conception Church in Cranston, Rhode Island.

Following Meghan and Brian's wedding ceremony, it was time for the most nerve-racking part of my day shooting for them: making sure I got to their reception venue before they did.

Now, that might not seem like a big deal but, in this case, it was make or break as Meghan and Brian had a surprise planned for their guests: They were going to arrive to their venue by boat.

I can tell you this: I don't know if there's a more worrisome moment as a wedding photographer than hoping you can spot a tiny boat in the water before it sneaks up on you. 

Luckily, I found Meghan and Brian in plenty of time to capture the moment they waved to their guests from the water. Yes, this is one of my favorite photos of their wedding day.

Meghan and Brian arrive by boat prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

Following their return to land, Meghan and Brian went straight into their family and wedding party formal photos. 

Afterward, despite the weather dropping a bit and it being unseasonably cold, the pair put their best faces forward and entertained my nonstop ideas for bride and groom portraits. 

I thank goodness that they did because their venue, the Squantum Association in Riverside, was stunning and gave us PLENTY of places to work with for some of the most beautiful bride and groom photos I've taken all year.

Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

I absolutely LOVED Brian and Meghan's formal photos and I could have walked away from their wedding at that point feeling pretty good about what we captured ... but we were just getting started.

Brian and Meghan's reception was every bit as amazing as I expected it to be and then some. Of course, it's hard not to have an amazing night when you literally start it off by lighting a cannon. 
Talk about setting the tone.

Meghan and Brian light a cannon during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
A look at the table settings during Meghan & Brian’’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
A look at the sweetheart table during Meghan & Brian’’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

Meghan and Brian chose the Squantum Association for their reception and while I've already spoken about the beautiful grounds the venue had for formal photos, it's worth repeating how amazing this venue was once we got inside. For a fall wedding, I don't think Meghan and Brian could have picked a better and more picturesque location once the sun set and the orange uplighting kicked in.

It just made the big moments of the night, like their first dance to the Ed Sheeran/Beyonce version of Perfect, that much more beautiful.

Meghan & Brian dance during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian dance during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian dance during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian dance during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

Meghan and Brian's reception started with a beautiful first dance, featured three beautiful speeches and saw two lovely parent dances between Meghan and her father as well as Brian and his mom ...

The groom's father gives a blessing during Meghan & Brian’’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
The maid of honor gives a toast during Meghan & Brian’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
The best man gives a toast during Meghan & Brian’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan and Brian toast their glasses during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her father dance during her September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her father dance during her September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her father dance during her September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan and her father dance during her September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian and his mother dance during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian and his mother dance during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian and his mother dance during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

But as much as this night followed the traditional paths of your everyday wedding reception, what made it so different and special was just how much dancing everyone did in between all of the major moments of the night.

Seriously. If there was a break in the events of the evening, there were at least five to ten people on the dance floor.

I always take this as a sign that we're in for a rowdy night and, boy, did this reception live up to that billing.

Meghan dances with a guest during her September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Meghan & Brian’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Meghan & Brian’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian drinks with his groomsmen during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan dances with Brian during her September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian dances with his groomsmen during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian cut their wedding cake during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian cut their wedding cake during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Meghan & Brian cut their wedding cake during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Guests dance during Meghan & Brian’s September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian dances during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian and Meghan dance during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

Seriously, though. What a party. What a night. 

There is absolutely NO CHANCE the photo above, which I think captures the spirit of the night perfectly, doesn't end up in my portfolio when I update everything at the end of this wedding season. 

That shot, and all the reception photos really, says so much about how this bride and groom and the night they experienced.

Brian and Meghan dance during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian dances during his September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.
Brian and Meghan kiss during their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

By the time I packed up my bags and made my way out of Meghan and Brian's wedding reception, I felt a bit overwhelmed. We had shot so many photos and captured so many memories, it was hard to think about what my favorite part of the day was.

Even now, a full six weeks after they said "I do," I have trouble choosing. And that's a good problem to have.

Meghan and Brian had a beautiful wedding day that perfectly fit their personalities and was everything they had hoped it would be. I'm just glad I got to tag along because, honestly, it was an amazingly fun day.

So congratulations Meghan and Brian! Here's hoping your wedding day was just the start of a perfect life together for a truly special bride and groom. 

-PJS

Meghan & Brian pose for a formal photo prior to their September 2018 wedding reception at Squantum Association in Riverside, Rhode Island.

The Vendor List

Photographer: Paul J. Spetrini, Paul J. Spetrini Photography; Groom Prep: Gents Barbershop & Spa, Cranston, Rhode Island; Bridal Prep: The Providence Biltmore, Providence, Rhode Island; Bride's Hair: Rebecca from Salon Sapphire by Sabrina Marie; Bride's Make-up: Sabrina from Salon Sapphire by Sabrina Marie; Florist: Michael from Small Pleasures LTD. Florist & Design Center; Ceremony: Immaculate Conception Church, Cranston, RI; Reception: Squantum Association, Riverside, RI; Transportation: Arrow Prestige Limousine & Coach
DJ: Jay R. from
Elite Entertainment RI

Check out more of my most recent wedding blogs:

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Paul J. Spetrini is a Rhode Island wedding photographer.

© 2020 Paul J. Spetrini Photography. All rights reserved.

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